Dr Richard Unitt
- iCRAG Investigator
Richard is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the iCRAG raw materials spoke. He earned his PhD from NUI in 1997 and has worked as a geological consultant, researcher and part-time lecturer. His current research examines the surface textural controls on high PSV (polished stone value) aggregates and the potential development of new testing methodologies combining petrology, digital microscopy and 3D metrology. This study will also generate a workable model for future exploration of this resource. General research interests include geofluids, mineralogy and petrology, applied geophysics, structural geology and geochronology
Raw materials play a major role in the development of a country’s infrastructure, including the construction of buildings and roads. My research looks at these raw materials from a geological perspective understanding how we can utilise these resources in a more economical and practical way. I am also part of a working group examining copper ore deposits in southern Ireland.
Projectt title: Surface Textural Controls of on High PSV Aggregates
My main research project is examining the mineralogical and microstructural controls that determine the physical properties of high polished stone value (hPSV) aggregates. PSV can be equated to the friction resistance (which can also be expressed by the ‘roughness’ of the stone aggregate) of a particular lithology exposed to in-situ road conditions. The roughness, measured using digital metrology, can be investigated by examining the petrography of each individual lithology. By measuring the roughness of the aggregate throughout the existing PSV test procedure and from in-situ road samples we can assess the accuracy of the test to replicate wear generated under traffic conditions. This will hopefully result in a more efficient method for assessing the properties of a high PSV aggregate.
Additional research is examining the potential genetic link between copper deposits in the Palaeozoic rocks in southern Ireland. This includes vein-hosted Lower Palaeozoic deposits from ‘The Copper Coast’ in County Waterford, SSC deposits hosted in Devonian siliciclastics in County Cork, vein-hosted Variscan/post-Variscan deposits in County Cork and Lower Carboniferous carbonate-hosted and ‘Irish-Type’ deposits in numerous southern counties.
Read more here.
- iCRAG Investigator
- Earth Resources
- Building Materials